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Seahawks Drafting For Future More Than Present

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Pete Carroll (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

Pete Carroll (Photo by Otto Greule Jr/Getty Images)

BILL  BIO PHOTO Bill Swartz
One of the Pacific Northwest’s most versatile talents, Bill Swartz...
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When the 2012 season came to a close coach Pete Carroll admitted it would be difficult for rookies to earn a job on his team in 2013.  That’s more true now with Seattle using free agency and trades to address needs at defensive end and receiver.

Seattle hit the jackpot in last year’s draft, finding a franchise quarterback, a starting middle linebacker, explosive pass rusher, and a solid running back.

Right now, I don’t see any glaring needs on the roster, except outside linebacker with the departure of veteran Leroy Hill.  Yes, Seattle can always use another large body for the middle of the defensive line, and a versatile offensive lineman.

With a nucleus of young starters making relatively low pay through next season, the Hawks will use this week’s draft to build depth and create cheaper options in 2014.  I would anticipate Seattle looking for a tight end to groom behind Zach Miller and Anthony McCoy.  Miller is 27 years old, and counts $11 million towards the salary cap in 2013.

Check out CBS Seattle’s 2013 PRO FOOTBALL MOCK DRAFT

Here are a few tight end candidates to consider according to John Harris of Yahoo Sports.  6-5, 258 pound Jack Doyle from Western Kentucky.  Michael Williams is 6-6, 269 pounds from Alabama, and from Rice, 6-6 250 pound Luke Wilson.   Harris says Wilson can be a solid all-around tight end if he can stay healthy, while Doyle has flown under the radar, but could become a competent pass catcher.

Seahawks GM John Schneider is a disciple of the Green Bay system where you draft a quarterback every season.  Seattle most likely will take a passer in the later rounds to compete for a back-up job against Josh Portis and Brady Quinn.  CBS Sports draft analyst Rob Rang likes Seattle taking Matt Scott from the University of Arizona, or Washington State Cougar  Jeff Tuel in round seven.

While the Hawks are blessed with pro bowl runner Marshawn Lynch, and second year man Robert Turbin, this draft offers great value for running backs in mid to lower rounds.  Rob Rang has his eyes on Dennis Johnson, a 5-6, 196 pound running back from Arkansas.  He’s an all-purpose specialist who could be a third down back like Leon Washington.

If outside linebacker is a priority this draft is loaded with fast, strong players.  Sean Porter from Texas A& M , U Conn’s Sio Moore, and Zavier Gooden from Missouri are all projected to be available in the third round.

As we’ve come to expect from this current Seattle regime, there will be plenty of curious selections.  Last year the Seahawks drafted defensive lineman J.R. Sweezy, and converted him to offensive guard.  Who knows, maybe this time they’ll take a kicker and turn him into a receiver.

Bill Swartz, 1090TheFan ,    e-mail  bill.swartz@1090seattle.com

 @sportwithswartz

(TM and © Copyright 2013 CBS Radio Inc. and its relevant subsidiaries. CBS RADIO and EYE Logo TM and Copyright 2012 CBS Broadcasting Inc. Used under license. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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